Programs And Courses

Surgical Technologist

Surgical Technologist

Learn more about our Surgical Technologist Associate in Science Degree and Certificate programs.  


What do surgical technologists do? 

Surgical technologists have various duties.  They: 

  • prepare the operating room by selecting and opening sterile supplies  
  • operate sterilizers, lights, suction machines, electrosurgical units, and diagnostic equipment 
  • help prepare patients for surgery by providing support and observing vital signs 
  • pass instruments, sutures, and sponges during surgery 
  • may hold retractors or instruments, sponge or suction the operative site, or cut suture materials as directed by the surgeon 


Where do surgical technologists work? 

Surgical technologists work in: 

  • Hospitals 
  • Outpatient surgical centers
  • Private physician offices


How much does the program cost?

Download Estimated Expenses (pdf, rev 5/14).


What degree will I earn? Will I be eligible for credentials? 

Upon successful completion, you will: 

  • earn a Surgical Technology Associate in Science Degree or Certificate, depending on your choice of program. 
  • be required to take the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) examination prior to graduation. 
    • Graduation is not dependent upon passing the NBSTSA exam.  
    • Certification provides evidence to employers, colleagues and the general public you meet national standards. It is often a condition of employment, a route to higher pay and a source of nationwide recognition.


What are the required courses?

  • Download Required Courses (pdf, rev 5/12).
  • Surgical Technology courses are offered at the Harrisburg Campus. Prerequisite courses are offered at other campuses and sites and on-line.
  • Clinical externships can be completed in health care facilities throughout our service area, including Lancaster, York, Lebanon and Gettysburg.  
  • The main difference between these programs is that there are no general education credits with the certificate.
  •  At this time it seems that employers do not recognize the difference and there is no difference in pay. The national organization is supporting/encouraging the associate level of preparation.  


What are the program clinical admission criteria and how do I apply for clinicals? 

Is the program accredited? 

The program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP)  
1361 Park Street
Clearwater, FL 33756
Phone: 727-210-2350

Can I advance my education in this field? 

  • This program leads directly to an occupation.  
  • Students can pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in a health related field in order to transition into a management, education or industry position. 
    • Franklin University offers a BS in Allied Healthcare Management. 
    • Shippensburg University offers a BS in Healthcare Administration.   
    • Immaculata University offers an accelerated BA in Health Care Management. They offer classes in accelerated format at HACC's Lancaster Campus.  

What is the most current (2015) program effectiveness data? 

  • Five-year program completion rate —68% 
  • Program performance on national board exam (five years) —97.5%  
  • Job placement (5 years) —95.1% 

Where can I get more information?


Who can I contact for more information? 

Health Careers
717-780-1988 or 800-222-4222, ext. 211988  

Surgical Tech Program Office 
HACC Harrisburg Campus Blocker Hall, Room 106 
One HACC Drive 
Harrisburg, PA 17110